Quiz: Why You Shouldn’t Adopt A Dog Based On Breed

DNA tests show that over two-thirds of the breed labels on dogs in shelters or on pet rescue websites are wrong.

Julie Levy, a professor of shelter medicine at the University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine, who ran those tests, offers some very good reasons to look beyond breed labels when adopting a dog:

1. BREED LABELS ARE PROBABLY WRONG

Levy and her colleagues asked almost 6,000 experts—vets, shelter staff, breeders, trainers, and more—to name shelter dogs’ breeds, and they didn’t exactly agree. Their guesses added up to an average of 53 different breeds for each dog! Only 15 percent of the dogs’ breeds were correctly identified more than 70 percent of the time, so take that label with a grain of salt.

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